Tamayoribime, also known as Tamayorihime, is a Shinto goddess from Japanese mythology. In Japanese, her name is written as 玉依毘売命 in the Kojiki (the Records of Ancient Matters) and as 玉依姫尊 in the Nihonshoki (the Chronicles of Japan).
Description in the myths
Tamayoribime is the daughter of Watatsumi (the god of the sea) and a younger sister of the goddess Toyotamabime. She appears in the section on the tenson-korin (the descent of the Sun-Goddess's grandson to earth) and the section on Ugayafukiaezu (a god and the father of Jinmu, the legendary first emperor of Japan). After she raised Ugayafukiaezu, whose mother was Toyotamabime and whose father was Hoori (meaning Ugayafukiaezu was Tamayoribime's nephew), she became his wife and gave birth to Itsuse no Mikoto, Inahi no Mikoto, Mikenu no Mikoto, and Kamuyamatoiwarebiko (the Emperor Jinmu). The Kojiki and the third addendum to the Nihonshoki state that because Hoori saw Toyotamabime giving birth in her original form, she felt ashamed and returned to the country of the sea, but she sent her younger sister Tamayoribime to him with a poem in order to raise the child. The main account of the Nihonshoki just says Tamayoribime accompanied her elder sister, who was traveling to the coast to give birth, and then she became Ugayafukiaezu's wife. The first addendum says that when Toyotamabime left for the country of the sea, she told her younger sister to stay there to raise the child. The fourth addendum says that at first, Toyotamabime returned to the sea with her child in her arms, but deciding that she should not keep the child of the grandson of the Sun Goddess under the sea, she told Tamayoribime to take the child and sent her off to the land.
Since the goddess name 'Tamayori' means 'an object that a divine spirit is drawn to,' Tamayoribime means a woman that a divine spirit is drawn to, in other words a shrine maiden. Goddesses and female humans named Tamayoribime (Tamayorihime) appears in various myths and ancient stories, with each one obviously referring to a different goddess or woman. For example, the legend of Kamo-jinja Shrine described in the now lost "Yamashironokuni Fudoki" (the Culture and Geography of Yamashiro Province) mentions the child of Kamotaketsunumi no Mikoto named Tamayorihime, who became pregnant with a god's child (Kamowakeikazuchi no Mikoto) after finding a red arrow which had been carried from the upper reaches of the river. There is also Ikutamayoribime, who is the wife of the god, Omononushi. There are a number of shrines throughout Japan which enshrine goddesses called Tamayoribime, and it is believed that many of such goddesses are deified shrine maidens who became the wife (i.e. a woman that a divine spirit was drawn to) of a local god (in most cases, however, they are regarded as the Tamayoribime in the myths who was Ugayafukiaezu's wife). The Tamayoribime who is enshrined at Kamomioya-jinja Shrine (Shimogamo-jinja Shrine) is the Tamayoribime who appears in the Yamashironokuni Fudoki.